Village of Brandon, WI
Fond Du Lac County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Village Board of the Village of Brandon 12-14-1998 as Title 8, Ch. 1, of the 1998 Code. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Animals — See Ch. 187.
Hazardous materials and pollution — See Ch. 284.
Nuisances — See Ch. 349.
Property maintenance — See Ch. 370.
Solid waste — See Ch. 398.
Trees and shrubs — See Ch. 421.
Water and sewers — See Ch. 448.
Zoning— See Ch. 485.

§ 288-1 Rules and regulations; violations and penalties. [1]

The Village Board may make reasonable and general rules for the enforcement of the provisions of this chapter and for the prevention of the creation of health nuisances and the protection of the public health and welfare and may, where appropriate, require the issuance of licenses and permits. All such regulations shall have the same effect as ordinances, and any person violating any of such regulations and any lawful order of the Board shall be subject to the general penalty provided for in § 1-4 of this Code.
[1]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. II).

§ 288-2 Abatement of health nuisances.

A. 
Defined. A "health nuisance" is any source of filth or cause of sickness.
B. 
Duty to abate. The Village Board shall abate health nuisances pursuant to Ch. 823, Wis. Stats., which is adopted by reference and made a part of this section.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. II).

§ 288-3 Deposit of deleterious substances prohibited.

No person shall deposit or cause to be deposited in any public street or on any public ground or on any private property not his/her own any refuse, garbage, litter, waste material or liquid or any other objectionable material or liquid. When any such material is placed on the person's own private property, it shall be properly enclosed and covered so as to prevent the same from becoming a public nuisance.

§ 288-4 Control of noxious weeds and rank growth. [1]

A. 
Authority. This section is enacted pursuant to § 66.0407, Wis. Stats., and this provision of the Wisconsin Statutes is adopted by reference and made a part of this section as if set forth here in full.
B. 
Noxious weeds, rank growth and accumulated yard waste prohibited. Every person shall destroy all noxious weeds and cut all rank growth on real estate which he or she owns, occupies or controls within the Village. Every person shall maintain the public right-of-way immediately adjacent to real estate which he or she owns, occupies or controls within the Village free and clear of accumulated yard waste.
C. 
Definitions. As used in this section, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
ACCUMULATED YARD WASTE
Accumulated brush, weeds, grass, tree branches, leaves, and other similar organic matter.
DESTROY
The complete killing of noxious weeds or the killing of weed plants above the surface of the ground by the use of chemicals, cutting or tillage, at such time and in such a manner as will keep such plants below 10 inches in height and will effectively prevent such plants from maturing to the bloom or flowering state.
NOXIOUS WEEDS
Weeds and plants known as thistle, dandelion, leafy spurge, creeping jenny, pigweed, quack grass and all other forms and types of weeds and grasses or herbaceous plants which are useless, without special beauty or growing to the injury of a crop or desired vegetation or to the disfigurement of a place or underbrush. The term "noxious weeds" shall not include a crop, vegetables, ornamental or decorative flowers, shrubs, bushes or plants.
RANK GROWTH
Grasses of any kind more than 10 inches in height.
D. 
Notice. The Weed Commissioner shall annually, on or before May 15, cause to be posted in at least three conspicuous places in the Village and published at least once each week for two consecutive weeks in the official newspaper of the Village, a notice that every person is required by law to destroy all noxious weeds and cut rank growth, as defined here, on real estate in the Village which he or she owns, occupies or controls.
E. 
Elimination of weeds, rank growth and accumulated yard waste by Weed Commissioner.
(1) 
The Weed Commissioner shall investigate the existence of noxious weeds, rank growth and accumulated yard waste in the Village, and if any person fails or neglects to destroy noxious weeds, cut rank growth or timely remove accumulated yard waste as required here, the Weed Commissioner shall issue a citation from $100 to $1,000 and issue a one-time only notice for the current growing season giving the property owner seven days to destroy noxious weeds or cut rank growth.
(2) 
The cost of destruction, cutting and disposal shall be charged to the property owner at the rate charged by the Village's contractor, together with an administrative fee of $100 per occasion. These costs are not to be considered a penalty, but are to reimburse the Village for its costs in administration and overhead.
(3) 
Such costs shall be certified to the Clerk, specifying by separate items the amount chargeable to each piece of land, describing the same, and the Clerk shall enter the amount chargeable to each tract of land in the next tax roll in a column headed "For Elimination of Weeds and Rank Growth" as a tax on the lands upon which such weeds were destroyed or rank growth cut, which tax shall be collected as other taxes are.
(4) 
The Weed Commissioner and his agents, representatives and employees may enter on any real estate in the Village on which any noxious weeds or rank growth are present, and cut or otherwise destroy them without being liable to an action for trespass or any other action for damages resulting from such entry and destruction, if reasonable care is exercised in the performance of the duties imposed here.
[1]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. II).

§ 288-5 Natural lawns.

A. 
Definitions. As used in this section, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
NATURAL LAWN
Includes common species of grass and wildflowers native to North America which are designed and purposely cultivated to exceed 10 inches in height from the ground. Specifically excluded in natural lawns are the noxious grasses and weeds identified in § 288-4 of this chapter.
NATURAL LAWN MANAGEMENT PLAN
A written plan relating to the management and maintenance of a lawn which contains a legal description of the lawn upon which the planted grass will exceed 10 inches in length, a statement of intent and purpose for the lawn, a detailed description of the vegetational types, plants and plant succession involved, and the specific management and maintenance techniques to be employed.
NEIGHBORING PROPERTY OWNERS
All those property owners who are located within 300 feet of the proposed natural lawn site.
PROPERTY OWNER
Includes the legal title holder and/or the beneficial owner of any such lot according to most current Village records.
B. 
Plan and permit required. The growth of a natural lawn in excess of 10 inches in height from the ground surface shall be prohibited within the Village of Brandon corporate limits unless a natural lawn management plan is approved and a permit is issued by the Village as set forth in this section. Natural lawns shall not contain litter or debris and shall not harbor undesirable wildlife.
C. 
Natural lawn management plan.
(1) 
Property owners who wish to plant and cultivate a natural lawn must submit their written plan and related information to the Village. Natural lawn management plans shall only indicate the planting and cultivating of natural lawns on property legally owned by the property owner. Applicants are strictly prohibited from developing a natural lawn on any Village-owned property, including street rights-of-way. This shall include, at a minimum, property located between the sidewalk and the street or a strip not less than 10 feet adjacent to the street where there is no sidewalk, whether the area is under public or private ownership.
(2) 
In addition, natural lawns shall not be permitted within 10 feet of the abutting property owner's property unless waived, in writing, by the abutting property owner on the side so affected. Such waiver is to be affixed to the natural lawn management plan. Such waiver may be revoked, in writing, by the abutting property owner at a later time, a copy to be filed with the permittee and the Village Clerk.
(3) 
Any subsequent property owner who abuts an approved natural lawn may revoke the waiver, thereby requiring the owner of the natural lawn to remove the natural lawn that is located in the ten-foot section abutting the neighboring property owner. Such revocation shall be put in writing and presented to the Village Clerk by the subsequent abutting property owner. Upon receiving the written request to revoke the original waiver, the Village Board shall contact the owner of the approved natural lawn and direct the owner to remove the natural lawn located in the ten-foot section abutting the neighboring property owner. The Village Board shall revise the approved natural lawn management plan accordingly. The owner of the approved natural lawn shall be required to remove the ten-foot section abutting the neighboring property owner within 20 days of receipt of the written notification from the Village, provided that the notification is received sometime between May 1 and November 1. Property owners who receive notification from the Village between November 1 and April 30 shall be required to remove the ten-foot section abutting the neighboring property owner no later than May 20 following receipt of the notification.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. II).
D. 
Application process.
(1) 
Property owners interested in applying for permission to establish a natural lawn shall file an application with the Village Clerk. The completed application shall include a natural lawn management plan. Upon submitting a completed application, a nonrefundable filing fee as set by the Village Board will be assessed by the Village. Upon receiving payment, copies of the completed application shall be mailed by the Village to each of the owners of record, as listed in the office of the Village Assessor, who are owners of the property situated wholly or in part within 300 feet of the boundaries of the property for which the application is made. If within 15 calendar days of mailing the copies of the complete application to the neighboring property owners the Village receives written objections from 51% or more of the neighboring property owners, the Village Clerk shall deny the application.[2]
[2]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. II).
(2) 
If the property owner's application is in full compliance with the natural lawn management plan requirements and less than 51% of the neighboring property owners provide written objections, the Village Clerk shall issue permission to install a natural lawn. Such permit shall be valid for two years. Permit renewals shall follow the procedures in this section.
E. 
Application for appeal. The property owner may appeal the Clerk's decision to deny the natural lawn permit request to the Village Board at an open meeting. All applications for appeal shall be submitted within 15 calendar days of the notice of denial of the natural lawn permit. The decision rendered by the Village Board shall be final and binding.[3]
[3]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. II).
F. 
Safety precautions for natural grass areas.
(1) 
When, in the opinion of the Chief of the Fire Department serving the Village of Brandon, the presence of a natural lawn may constitute a fire or safety hazard due to weather and/or other conditions, the Fire Chief may order the cutting of natural lawns to a safe condition. As a condition of receiving approval of the natural lawn permit, the property owner shall be required to cut the natural lawn within three days upon receiving written direction from the Fire Chief.
(2) 
Natural lawns shall not be removed through the process of burning unless stated and approved as one of the management and maintenance techniques in the natural lawn management plan and appropriate Village open burning permits have been obtained. The Fire Chief shall review all requests to burn natural lawns and shall determine if circumstances are correct and all applicable requirements have been fulfilled to ensure public safety. Burning of natural lawns shall be strictly prohibited unless a written permit to burn is issued by the Fire Chief. The Fire Chief shall establish a written list of requirements for considering each request to burn natural lawns, thereby ensuring the public safety. In addition, the property owner requesting permission to burn the natural lawn shall produce evidence of property damage and liability insurance identifying the Village as a party insured. A minimum amount of acceptable insurance shall be $300,000.
G. 
Revocation of an approved natural lawn permit. The Village President, upon the recommendation of the Weed Commissioner, shall have the authority to revoke an approved natural lawn permit if the owner fails to maintain the natural lawn or comply with the provisions set forth in this section. Notice of intent to revoke an approved natural lawn permit shall be appealable to the Village Board. All applications for appeal shall be submitted within 15 calendar days of receipt of the written notice of intent to revoke the approved natural lawn permit. Failure to file an application for appeal within 15 calendar days shall result in the revoking of the natural lawn permit. All written applications for appeal filed within the fifteen-calendar-day requirement shall be reviewed by the Village Board in an open meeting. The decision rendered by the Village Board shall be final and binding.[4]
[4]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. II).
H. 
Public nuisance defined; abatement after notice.
(1) 
The growth of a natural lawn as defined in this section shall be considered a public nuisance unless a natural lawn management plan has been filed and approved and a permit is issued by the Village as set forth in this section. Violators shall be served with a notice of public nuisance by certified mail to the last known mailing address of the property owner.
(2) 
If the person so served with a notice of public nuisance violation does not abate the nuisance within 10 days, the enforcement officer may proceed to abate such nuisance, keeping an account of the expense of the abatement, and such expense shall be charged to and paid by such property owner. Notice of the bill for abatement of the public nuisance shall be mailed to the owner of the premises and shall be payable within 10 calendar days from receipt thereof. Within 60 days after such costs and expenses are incurred and remain unpaid, the Village Clerk shall enter those charges onto the tax roll as a special tax as provided by state statute.
(3) 
The failure of the Village Clerk to record such claim or to mail such notice or the failure of the owner to receive such notice shall not affect the right to place the Village expense on the tax rolls for unpaid bills for abating the public nuisance as provided for in this section.
I. 
Penalty.
(1) 
Any person, firm or corporation who or which does not abate the nuisance within the required time period or who or which otherwise violates the provisions of this section shall be subject to the general penalty found in § 1-4 of this Code.
(2) 
In addition to any penalties herein provided, the Village may issue stop-work orders upon owners of lots where work is unfinished under a previously issued building permit for any violation of this section.[5]
[5]
Editor's Note: Original § 8-1-6 of the 1988 Code, Regulation of length of lawns and grasses, as amended 8-13-2007, which immediately followed this section, was repealed at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. II).

§ 288-6 Compulsory connection to Village sewer and water system.

A. 
When required. Whenever a sewer or water main becomes available to any building used for human habitation, the owner of the property upon which the building is located shall connect the building to such main or mains in the manner prescribed by law, except the Village Board may defer connection to such water or sewer main or mains for those properties which have existing septic systems or wells whose construction was permitted by the Village of Brandon, but such deferment shall not exceed five years from the date of installation of such main or mains.
B. 
Notice. Whenever a sewer or water main becomes available to any building used for human habitation, the Building Inspector shall notify the owner or his/her agent, in writing, by registered mail addressed to the last known address of the owner or his/her agent.
C. 
Building Inspector may cause connection at expense of owner. If the owner or his/her agent fails to comply with the notice of the Building Inspector within 10 days of service or mailing thereof, the Building Inspector may cause connection to be made and the expense thereof shall be assessed as a special tax against the property.
D. 
Privies, cesspools, etc., prohibited after connection with sewer. After connection of any building used for human habitation to a sewer main, no privy, cesspool or waterless toilet shall be used in connection with such human habitation.

§ 288-7 Unhealthy, hazardous or unsightly materials on public or private property.

A. 
Inspections.
(1) 
Whenever the Building Inspector, Fire Inspector or other authorized Village official shall, upon inspection of any premises within the Village of Brandon, find that there is deposited, placed, stored or remaining on said premises any garbage, junk, rubbish, rubble or trash, abandoned, outmoded, or non-salable merchandise or parts, construction materials, rotting yard and orchard waste, accumulation of grease or food wastes in a grease trap or other place or depository which presents a risk of clogging or blocking a sewer system, or any other unhealthy, hazardous or unsightly materials or things which create a fire or health hazard, or which are detrimental to the appearance, neatness and cleanliness of the immediate neighborhood or the Village of Brandon in general, such official shall issue his/her written order to the owner and/or occupant of the premises to remove said garbage, junk, rubbish, rubble or trash, abandoned, outmoded, or non-salable merchandise or parts, construction materials, rotting yard and orchard waste, accumulation of grease or food wastes in a grease trap or other place or depository which presents a risk of clogging or blocking a sewer system, or other unhealthy, hazardous or unsightly materials or things.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. II).
(2) 
Said written order shall provide that such removal shall be accomplished within 10 days after service of said order upon the owner or occupant of the premises involved. Such written order, in addition to specifying and describing the material or things to be removed, shall also set forth on the face thereof the provisions of Subsection B.
(3) 
Prosecution of violators under this section shall not preclude other enforcement actions allowed by law, including other actions under this Code.
B. 
Appeal. Any person feeling himself/herself aggrieved by any order of a Village official under this section may, within 10 days from the date of receipt of such order, appeal such order to the Village Board.
C. 
Exceptions. Nothing contained in this section shall be construed to prohibit the depositing of rubbish, rubble, junk, trash, abandoned, outmoded or non-salable merchandise or parts or unsightly materials or things which are:
(1) 
Lawfully sited pursuant to Chapter 485, Zoning, and operated in a manner not constituting a nuisance;
(2) 
Temporarily deposited due to an emergency;
(3) 
Materials during construction; or
(4) 
Collected and piled for immediate pickup and disposal by the Village or by private means.
D. 
Nonconforming uses. It shall not be a defense to the provisions of this section that the owner or occupant of the premises involved has a nonconforming use under the provisions of Chapter 485, Zoning, but the provisions of this section shall be complied with notwithstanding that the owner or occupant of any given premises is using or occupying such premises under a valid nonconforming use.

§ 288-8 Rodent control.

A. 
Definitions. The following definitions shall be applicable in this section:
HARDWARE CLOTH
Wire screening of such thickness and spacing as to afford reasonable protection against the entrance of rodents.
OWNER or MANAGER
Whenever any person or persons shall be in actual possession of or have charge, care or control of any property within the Village, as executor, administrator, trustee, guardian or agent, such person or persons shall be deemed and taken to be the owner or owners of such property within the true intent and meaning of this section and shall be bound to comply with the provisions of this section to the same extent as the owner, and notice to any such person of any order or decision of the Building Inspector or his/her designee shall be deemed and taken to be a good and sufficient notice as if such person or persons were actually the owner or owners of such property, except that whenever an entire premises or building is occupied as place of business, such as a store, factory, warehouse, rooming house, junkyard, lumber yard or any other business under a single management, the person, firm or corporation in charge of such business shall be considered the owner or manager.
RODENT HARBORAGE
Any place where rodents can live and nest without fear of frequent molestation or disturbance.
RODENTPROOF CONTAINER
A container constructed of concrete or metal, or the container shall be lined with metal or other material that is impervious to rodents, and openings into the container such as doors shall be tight fitting to prevent the entrance of rodents.
RODENTPROOFING
Consists of closing openings in building foundations and openings under and around doors, windows, vents and other places which could provide means of entry for rodents with concrete, sheet iron, hardware cloth or other types of rodentproofing material approved by the Village.
B. 
Elimination of rodent harborages. Whenever accumulations of rubbish, boxes, lumber, scrap metal, car bodies or any other materials provide rodent harborage, the person, firm or corporation owning or in control of such materials shall cause the materials to be removed, or the materials shall be stored so as to eliminate the rodent harborage. Lumber boxes and similar materials shall be neatly piled. These piles shall be raised at least a foot above the ground. When the owner of the materials cannot be found after a reasonable search, the owner or manager of the premises on which the materials are stored shall be responsible for disposal, or proper piling, of the materials.
C. 
Elimination of rodent feeding places. No person, firm or corporation shall place, or allow to accumulate, any materials that may serve as a food for rodents in a site accessible to rodents. Any waste material that may serve as food for rodents shall be stored in rodent-proof containers. Feed for birds shall be placed on raised platforms, or such feed shall be placed where it is not accessible to rodents.
D. 
Extermination. Whenever rodent holes, burrows or other evidence of rodent infestation are found on any premises or in any building within the Village, it shall be the duty of the owner or manager of such property to exterminate the rodents or to cause the rodents to be exterminated. Within 10 days after extermination, the owner or manager shall cause all of the rodent holes or burrows in the ground to be filled with earth or other suitable material.
E. 
Rodentproofing. It shall be the duty of the owner or manager of any building in the Village of Brandon to make such building reasonably rodentproof, to replace broken basement windows and, when necessary, to cover the basement window openings with hardware cloth or other suitable material for preventing rodents from entering the building through such window openings.

§ 288-9 Composting regulations.

A. 
Purpose and intent. The purpose of this section is to promote the recycling of yard wastes and certain kitchen wastes through composting and to establish minimum standards for proper compost maintenance.
B. 
Definitions. As used in this section, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
COMPOST
The organic waste produced from the growing, trimming, and removal of grass, branches (not exceeding one inch in diameter), bushes, shrubs, plants, leaves and garden debris.
KITCHEN WASTE
Any uncooked plant matter not contaminated by or containing meat, fish and/or dairy products.
C. 
Maintenance. All compost piles shall be maintained using approved composting procedures to comply with the following requirements:
(1) 
All compost piles shall be enclosed in a freestanding compost bin. Each compost bin shall be no larger in volume than 125 cubic feet and shall be no taller than 42 inches.
(2) 
All compost bins shall be so maintained as to prevent the attraction or harborage of rodents and pests. The presence of rodents in or near a compost bin shall be cause for the Village to proceed under § 288-8.
(3) 
All compost bins shall be so maintained as to prevent unpleasant odors.
(4) 
No compost bin shall be allowed to deteriorate to such condition as to be a blighting influence on the surrounding property or neighborhood or the Village in general.
(5) 
Setback.
(a) 
All compost bins shall be located not less than three feet from a property line or principal building or dwelling and three feet from any detached accessory building.
(b) 
A variance from these setback requirements may be applied for if the property owner(s) can show a hardship exists which prohibits compliance. In addition, any variance application must include a signed written approval of the variance request from the adjacent property owner(s). Variances can be granted by the Building Inspector on an annual basis upon the proper application being submitted by the property owner(s). Screening and/or fencing of compost bins may be required as a condition of a variance being granted.
(6) 
No compost bin shall be located in any yard except a rear yard, as defined in Chapter 485, Zoning. A compost bin may be located in a side yard as defined in Chapter 485, Zoning, subject to the annual variance procedure contained in Subsection C(5)(b) and must be screened from view to the street.
(7) 
Those composting bins which existed prior to the adoption of this section shall be given one year to comply with the requirements set forth herein.
D. 
Ingredients.
(1) 
No compost bin shall contain any of the following:
(a) 
Lakeweeds.
(b) 
Cooked food scraps of any kind or type.
(c) 
Fish, meat or other animal products.
(d) 
Manures.
(e) 
Large items that will impede the composting process.
(2) 
Permitted ingredients in a compost bin shall include the following:
(a) 
Yard waste.
(b) 
Coffee grounds and used tea leaves.
(c) 
Uncooked plant matter not contaminated by or containing meat, fish, and/or dairy products.
(d) 
Commercial compost additives.
E. 
Owner responsibility. Every owner or operator shall be responsible for maintaining all property under his or her control in accordance with the requirements of this section.
F. 
Municipal exception. Any municipal composting site maintained by the Village shall be exempt from the provisions of this section.

§ 288-10 Discharge of clear waters.

A. 
Discharge. No person shall cause, allow or permit any roof drain, surface drain, subsoil drain, drain from any mechanical device, gutter, ditch, pipe, conduit, sump pump or any other object or thing used for the purposes of collecting, conducting, transporting, diverting, draining or discharging clear water from any part of any private premises owned or occupied by said person to discharge into a sanitary sewer.
B. 
Nuisance. The discharge into a sanitary sewer from any roof drain, surface drain, subsoil drain, drain from any mechanical device, gutter, ditch, pipe, conduit, sump pump or any other object or thing used for the purposes of collecting, conducting, transporting, diverting, draining or discharging clear water from any part of any private premises is hereby declared to be a public nuisance and a hazard to the health, safety and well-being of the residents of the Village and to the protection of the property.
C. 
Groundwater. Where deemed necessary by the Village Board, every house shall have a sump pump installed for the purpose of discharging clear waters from foundation drains and ground infiltration and where the building is not serviced by a storm sewer shall either discharge into an underground conduit leading to a drainage ditch, gutter, or dry well or shall discharge onto the ground surface in such other manner as will not constitute a nuisance as defined herein.
D. 
Stormwater. All roof drains, surface drains, drains from any mechanical device, gutters, pipe, conduits or any other objects or things used for the purpose of collecting, conducting, transporting, diverting, draining or discharging stormwaters shall be discharged either to a storm sewer, a dry well, an underground conduit leading to a drainage ditch or onto the ground surface in such other manner as will not constitute a nuisance as defined herein.
E. 
Storm sewer lateral. Where municipal storm sewers are provided and it is deemed necessary by the property owner and/or the Village to discharge clear waters from a parcel of land, a storm sewer lateral shall be installed and connected to the storm sewer main at the expense of the owner.
F. 
Conducting tests. If a designated Village agent suspects an illegal clear water discharge as defined by this section or by any other applicable provision of the Wisconsin Administrative Code as it may, from time to time, be amended, he/she may, upon reasonable notice and at reasonable times, enter the private premises where such illegal clear water discharge is suspected and conduct appropriate tests to determine whether such suspected illegal clear water discharge actually exists. In addition, Village inspectors may inspect for illegal clear water discharges as a part of a routine inspection without cause.